This page contains a poster presented at the 18th Annual Meeting of ISMPP (International Society for Medical Publication Professionals), May 9-11, 2022.

Authors and affiliations

Laura L. Perrya, Clarinda Cerejob, Kwisha Shahb, and Prerna Motwanib#

aCactus Life Sciences, Cactus Communications, Princeton, NJ, USA

bCactus Life Sciences, Cactus Communications, Mumbai, India


Objective: To gather opinions from pharma professionals on what patient centricity means to them and their organization, the current state of progress, and barriers encountered.

Methods: A survey of industry professionals was commissioned by Cactus Communications, driven by the pharma journal PM360, and distributed via email databases and social media. The survey aimed to assess how respondents define patient centricity, the current state of patient involvement in drug development and clinical research publication, and the barriers to greater patient involvement.

Results: The survey results of 31 pharma and associated industry professionals showed varied definitions of patient centricity: The majority (68%) defined it as “placing the patient’s well-being at the core of all initiatives”. Interestingly, only 6% of the participants defined it as “including patients as authors, peer reviewers, guest editors, and contributors to journals for clinical trial publications”.

“Determining which patients to engage with/representativeness” was identified as the strongest barrier (40% respondents) to patient/caregiver engagement as advisors in the drug R&D process. Further, the “historical precedent to only ask for clinicians’ input” was the strongest barrier (57% respondents) to patient-centricity overall.

“Disease-state education initiatives” (60% respondents) and “post-launch patient education” (52% respondents) are the most common areas where patients are currently involved.

Conclusion: Our survey results indicate that while patient centricity has been gaining momentum as an industry buzzword and a strategic priority for pharma, there exists a critical need for industry standards, guidelines, and educational initiatives to establish definitions of patient centricity and to determine when and to what extent patients should be involved in drug development, medical communication initiatives, and clinical publications.

Keywords: Patients, Standards, Medical/scientific communication



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Cactus Life Sciences
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Cactus Life Sciences helps pharma, biotech, and medical device organizations worldwide with content strategy, development, and data. We work with medical affairs to disseminate insight-driven information to healthcare professionals, payors, and patients in a range of formats.